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Usman Khawaja stars again as Australia seal comeback series win over India

14 March 2019

NEW DELHI: Opener Usman Khawaja struck his second century of the series to lead Australia to 272-9 in the winner-takes-all fifth one-day global against India on Wednesday. This after losing the Test and ODI series in their own backyard when India travelled their from late previous year to first part of 2019.

Now, it is hard to understand if Kohli was just referring to this match or the World Cup too, when he said playing three front-line seamers, Kuldeep Yadav and two all-rounders is India's "most balanced" side.

India fiddled with their XI through the series and often juggled between experimenting with different combinations and finding a way to secure the series. That means we will have to be very wary of the bad habits that might creep in during the IPL", Kohli had said, before warning:"That (not picking up bad habit) will take a consistent effort from all the players during the IPL to keep a check on that.

The departure of Virat Kohli proved key - as it often does - as Marcus Stoinis got some extra bounce to remove the India captain, who top-edged to Alex Carey for 20.

Peter Handscomb, who was the standout performer in the final two ODIs said that the series win means a lot ahead of the World Cup.

Kohli also refused to blame the dew, which hindered the bowlers particularly in the fourth ODI in Mohali, for India's series defeat and instead credited Australia for dealing with pressure much better than the hosts did. Former Aussie Test seamer Trent Copeland wrote on Twitter: "Seriously incredible result from 2-0 down away from home". Usman Khawaja compiled a 106-ball 100-run knock - his 2nd ODI century - while it was leg spinner Adam Zampa, in association with Pat Cummins, that deflated the Indian batting line-up, which for some odd reason was an experimental one at best.

A seventh-wicket stand of 91 runs between Kedar Jadhav and Bhuvneshwar Kumar created some nervous moments for the visitors but it was snapped when Cummins claimed his 14th wicket of the series. In two of the last three ODI assignments before the World Cup, Ambati Rayudu has not finished the series he started.

Coach Justin Langer said he was "incredibly proud" of a team who also swept the two-match Twenty20 series.

Australia's Adam Zampa, left, snares the big wicket of India's Rohit Sharma in Delhi. Besides, useful contributions from Jhye Richardson and Pat Cummins helped Australia post 272 runs.

Australia's selectors suddenly have the good sort of headaches, rather than scrambling to find batsmen capable of delivering match-winning innings in the absence of Steve Smith and David Warner.

Kohli's comments are in stark contrast to what he had said before the first T20 against Australia at Vizag last month, where he had specifically asked his World Cup-bound players to not alter their games to suit the frenetic needs of the IPL.

Usman Khawaja stars again as Australia seal comeback series win over India